Ex-NY state leader seeks judge's mercy to avoid prison death

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Published: Jun. 18, 2020 at 7:09 PM EDT
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Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver says he doesn't want to die in prison. And his lawyers are urging a judge to spare him a prison term because he could get COVID-19 behind bars.

The 76-year-old Silver, a Democrat, made his appeal Wednesday in a handwritten letter to the judge that contained his biggest apology yet.

He blamed his demise that resulted in a 2015 arrest on a corrupting sense of entitlement that developed as he rose high in state government over many years.

His lawyers filed arguments in Manhattan federal court, as well.

Prosecutors, though, said Silver should get seven years in prison after his conviction on bribery and extortion charges.

A 2015 conviction was overturned on appeal but the Silver was convicted again in 2018.

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